My Time at Democracy Plus – Matthew Grace

I arrived at Democracy Plus on September 5th, 2023. During my time as an intern at D+, I managed to be included in many projects and every area of research. I was tasked with researching post-legislative scrutiny, comparative public procurement, gendered and Balkan misinformation, and successful recycling campaigns around the world to model for Kosovo’s budding recycling programs.

I had the privilege of attending round table events with judges and lawyers centering on judicial transparency within Kosovo, observed USAID partnered municipal social contract activities with concerned citizens from all backgrounds and reviewed translated documents to ensure the English translation was accurate.

At D+, I was also given the opportunity to accompany a misinformation training team that traveled to many municipality youth centers throughout Kosovo to educate voluntary youth about the growing threat of misinformation and how best to recognize and combat it.

In conjunction with this training, I participated in a dual weekend misinformation boot camp that hosted experts from various political and media backgrounds to educate youths about misinformation, critical thinking, and productive media practices. The youths then developed projects to combat misinformation, hate speech, and sexism with funding from UNDP and D+. During this boot camp, I facilitated an online “Misinformation Quiz” in various languages for the ethnically diverse youth audience.

My colleagues at D+ became my family away from home. They were inclusive, considerate, and caring as well as professional, respectful, and fun. I am grateful for the effort my colleagues put into making sure I was comfortable and engaged with the organization. I have been very fortunate to intern for D+ and they have given me a plethora of beneficial and amazing experiences that I will cherish and never forget.